North Korean Church Growing

Ever since famine caused thousands to flee to China in the late 1990s, North Korea has seen unprecedented exposure to Christian missionaries. With the collapse of the state distribution system, Christian aid groups have stayed on along the border, offering those fleeing into China everything from food to clothing — and faith.

<p>A man cycles past a Korean church in Yanji in Yanbian on the China-North Korea border in this file photo. For North Korean refugees, Christian aid groups are crucial in providing shelter and aid. (Photo by Peter Parks/AFP)</p>

Before the famine that killed around 300,000 people, North Korea was completely sealed off from religious groups, its people forbidden from worshipping anyone but the ruling Kim dynasty. Few of the Christians that made up 13 percent of Pyongyang’s population in 1945 are thought to still be alive.

Now, however, there are many more North Korean Christians, mostly those who have, in recent years, escaped to China and found faith there. Many of them have since been forced back to North Korea, a country ranked among the least tolerant of religion.

Some 300,000 Christians reportedly live in North Korea, with about 60,000 believed to be imprisoned due to their beliefs, according to Open Doors Ministry.

However, more and more evangelism within North Korea is being carried out by North Korean believers themselves,  a result of nearly 20 years of missionary activity along the border and encouragement to the underground church inside North Korea.

  • Pray for North Korean Believers, as they daily face the threat of imprisonment and torture.
  • Give thanks that North Korean believers are increasingly willing to share their faith with their families and communities. Pray that many will find new life and  hope through the Gospel.
  • Pray for the many believers in prison for their faith in North Korea. Pray that they will not lose hope, but will know that they are watched over and cared for by their heavenly Father.
  • Pray for the Government of North Korea, to soften its stance and allow Christians to worship in freedom, without fear.

Psalm 65 vs 2: “You who answer prayer, to you all people will come.”





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